THIS COUPLE IS THE SALT OF THE EARTH IN SERVING A MISSION. The Bingham's arrived about 2 months ago, and were sent right to the bush in the village where Elder Terry and I went to train for the last 2 days. So a normal day in the life of bush missionaries are from about 3am onward you have the rooster crowing and keeping the rest of them right along with him, the electricity goes out around 6pm every day till around 6am the next morning, the sweat is always a constant companion, the fridge is a constant challenge to keep things from spoiling, no grocery store for at least 2 hours away, your drinking water is a slow process of filtering it, only a stand up room you enter to shower, the dusty path in front of their home is a constant procession of passerby's that just come in without even knocking, when the electricity goes out their is a generator but it is so loud that you literally have to scream to talk over it and they smile everyday as if life couldn't be any better. I loved as we left that she called me "Her White Face Friend Fix". They have no other white people except for the young elders ever. I marvel at what they accomplish each day, and loved walking around and having anyone we went to meet pull out any stool or bench for us to sit on. The way of life in Abomosu is at ease and everyone just goes with the electricity on or off. It's just their life. God Bless the heart and strength of the Bingham's!
Friday, May 29, 2015
THE FOOTSTEPS THAT ONE TAKES DURING A DAY IN THE BUSH. Imagine coming off the main road and then traveling another 2 hours on the dusty pothole roads before you reach your destination. Then, the morning breaks and your footsteps take you into the stillness of their smiles. The simple ways of life remind you that your home for this moment is Africa, and that you have the privilege of being surrounded by simple goodness. Come see why home is where our hearts are!
OH, IF THE PICTURE COULD SHOW THE REST OF HER DRESS IT WAS NOTHING BUT HOLES!
AN OLD TIRE WILL DO...AND WHAT IS THE BIG DEAL ABOUT CLOTHES?
COME ON DANCE WITH ME!
THERE IS NO PLACE LIKE HOME HERE IN GHANA. A BLESSING OF SUCH GOODNESS,
Thursday, May 28, 2015
THIS WEEK I ENTERED INTO A ROOM OF ELDERS AND SISTERS PERFECTING THEIR ENGLISH. I marveled at the broad stroke of where they came from, and their love of the gospel. We take for granted periods at the end of a sentence, caps at the beginning and correct tense of the verbs. Within all the learning is the spirit enlarging the capacity to retain, understand and live.
AND THE PICTURE BELOW OF THOSE THAT HAVE SERVED HEART AND SOUL AND RETURNING WITH HONOR. SHOES WORN, SHIRTS FRAYED AT THE COLLAR AND SOME SUITS THAT FIT LOOSE WHILE OTHERS ARE SNUG. ALL HAVE SHARED, SACRIFICED AND GIVEN MORE THAN THEY THOUGHT THEY EVER HAD IN HIS NAME JESUS CHRIST.
I LOVE THE BUSH ROADS AND LEAVING THE CITY BEHIND. Heavenly Father is so gracious to our missionary heart, because He plants us in the soil of the chaos of the city, and then sends you to the quiet dusty back roads in the bush. Ahhhhhhh is filling that space that we crave without even knowing. Sometimes you don't know what you miss till you discover it all over again along your way.
Come with me for a land lost in it's own time!
GOOD THING I SPOTTED THE SIGN FOR THE CHURCH SO WE DIDN'T MISS OUR TURN.
TUNNEL TREES TO BREATHE.
THE ROAD TO SUCH FAITHFUL SAINTS.
WE ARE ONE OF THE FEW TRUCKS, AND I LOOK OUT MY WINDOW AND WONDER WHERE THEIR FOOTSTEPS ARE TAKING THEM IN THIS LAND THAT HAS STOLEN MY HEART.
Sunday, May 17, 2015
GOSPEL LITERACY CONTINUES TO ROLL OUT, and progress is coming small small. I love this saying of small small or big big. Right now, small small is what we are seeing, but it is with excitement and commitment. I'm in the second phase with some stakes with the first In-Service for the teachers. I'm, also thankful that we can hold the meeting in the High Council room because it has an A/C....yes mam! They travel far and I always feel so humbled to be in their presence, because they are big big in my heart.
BELOW THE LEARNERS TEACH ME MORE THAN I WILL EVER TEACH THEM. TODAY, WE SPOKE ABOUT "LOVE ONE ANOTHER". WE ARE ALL ENLISTED TO BRING LOVE IN ALL ITS SHAPES AND SIZES.
THEY WROTE THEIR NAMES ON THE BOARD AND SMILED BIG BIG!
ON OUR WAY TO WORSHIP THIS DAY...And you never know what sights will be right outside your window. It mattereth not that you have lost your way, because of what captures your sight in any second along the roadside. We find ourselves adventuring each Sunday because we move to different parts of the country and different wards. It is a big country with plenty of opportunity to get lost. I've become accustomed to looking at lost in an entirely different light since we have been here. All the back roads and the re-routing of our GPS you simply roll your eyes and smile. Today, we found ourselves more than lost a little and look what was along our way.
THEN , YOU COME AROUND THE BEND AND FIND WHAT YOU THOUGHT WAS LOST BUT NOW IS FOUND.
TRULY OFF THE BEATEN PATH AND AWAY FROM ACCRA YOU CAN FIND THOSE THAT WORSHIP WITH FULL PURPOSE OF HEART RIGHT AROUND THE NEXT BEND.
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
JUST OUTSIDE MY WINDOW a world of simple but yet hard teaches me each day, and I pray the lessons imprint themselves deeply upon the daily change in me. Missions are a multi facet gift that we as missionaries are afforded to look at who we are and who we need to be. When you strip away the daily comings and goings of the life you left behind, the lenses you see the world from affords you time to truly see the important walks of life. It appears the more I see the more I still myself to invite the lives around me to be more within my reach. Though your daily routine on a mission is hectic and change is always part of your day, there is this TIME for the eternal things. I love my days of life just steps outside my car window, because it centers the essence of what needs to be changed in me.
Weeks apart these pictures were taken, but once again the view of life captures what I need to remember! It's more that just a sidewalk with people...it's His children walking for me to see more.
Sunday, May 3, 2015
TODAY WAS STAKE CONFERENCE AND AGAIN THE TESTED TESTIMONIES OF THOSE THAT STOOD THIS DAY HAS FILLED ME TO THE BRIM. They come so very early to be present and find a seat for this conference. It starts at 10 and by 8:30am the hall is full. Elder Terry was given the assignment to take pictures for the historical records, and I watched him feeling quite awkward standing during the meeting pointing the camera at the congregation. The choir was dressed in white shirts, red skirts and a red scarf and the men red bow ties. As we arrived at around 8:45, we were towards the very back then one of the ushers came and said that the President had reserved seats for us up front. I always cringe when this happens, but this time I felt his honor and respect for some of the Senior Missionaries that attended. So, up front and center to reap every word spoken.
This little boy came and sat next to me, and was a reverent as any adult in the place. He searched my eyes, and I felt as if I was in the presence of an angel with a hug from heaven.
Friday, May 1, 2015
I LOVE THE RANDOM BUT MEANT TO BE RELATIONSHIPS THAT HEAVENLY FATHER SENDS OUR WAY. This gentlemen, Sadia ZouZou, is from Ivory Coast and I tried to connect with him when I was there a few weeks back, but we missed one another. He showed up at the Area Office and requested an appointment with me about Literacy. Come to find out he is trying hard to help over 400 learners in a small part of his country, and he was desperate for ideas and any help that could be given. We chatted for some time and come to find out he is doing more of Functional Literacy instead of Gospel Literacy. Meaning that he is trying to teach English to those that are running any small business to survive. We pulled together and printed off curriculum for him to use, and he was as excited as a little boy on Christmas Day. What took only a couple of hours, allowed him to return to Ivory Coast to make a difference in the lives of struggling men and women. The principles we teach are so easy that if someone has the heart they can truly make a difference. It's just that simple and that complete. I love how his tie color matched a blouse that I had made here with the Adinkra symbol Gye Nyame meaning the supremacy of God. How he looks upon us and sets our paths alongside one another for his purposes.
THERE IS NO NEED TO GO SHOPPING IN ANY FANCY MALL when you can just pull over on the side of a dusty road and look in the trees. We call this tree shopping here, because they display their dresses just on leafy tree limbs. It is quite the sight at first as you see the display of such bold colors on every branch, and it is always fun when the other sisters figure why not get another dress for less than $10. This day all three of us found one we really liked, and wore them to the office this week. It's delightful to send other sisters that want to buy as well to the Shopping Tree. Indeed, our wardrobe doesn't resemble anything we brought from America, and we are beginning to fit in with fashion here! Do you think you will recognize me when I come home?
Ahhh these wonderful women who are working so hard to learn to read, write and understand the word of God. I feel like I should take off my shoes in their presence, because of their strength of faith and devotion to God. These women are those Saints in this land that desire all of His blessings through reading the pure doctrine of this Gospel. They are hungry to learn, and I have seen miracles happen as they learn to read with the gift of the spirit. The Sister in the far left is the teacher, Isabella, and teaches them twice a week, but comes an extra day for one of the students who is struggling.
I love standing before them and bearing my witness that Heavenly Father sees them here this very day, and shines upon their efforts. Each one of these Sisters are my sheroes! Yes, there is one brother that comes to support the teacher, and has such a gentle nature of helping about him. By in large the men are shy to come in, and we find it very difficult for them to culturally come to class. Better watch out men these women are ready to SHINE!
What a sacred blessing to be this close to His Holy House each and every day. I often wonder as I pass the Temple during my days, if life can be any more glorious than this. We see busloads of faithful saints coming from many countries to spend their days in His House. They bring their children, they do sealings, endowment sessions, baptisms and frequent here often. I admire the saints and their dedication to Family History and Temple Work. Coming from His Holy House how can you not beam with all the blessings we have been given.